Adidas may have underestimated Tiger, of which private equity firm may win

A few years ago, Adidas was struggling to find much interest in its TaylorMade golf clubs. After Tiger Woods’ historic Masters win on Sunday, the item may want them back.

The sportswear giant put the unit up for sale in 2016 to focus on its shoes as well as clothing, as the golf industry was under pressure.

Woods had lost his luster as well as as well as millenials were seeking pastimes of which were less time-intensive as well as more accessible. The pain was felt via equipment makers to retailers like Golfsmith, which of which year filed for bankruptcy.

the item took Adidas about a year to find a buyer. within the interim, multiple private equity firms passed, balking at the brand’s finances as well as expressing broader concerns about golf.

the item finally found a buyer in May 2017: Private equity firm KPS Capital Partners, which bought the brand, along with Adams Golf as well as Ashworth, for $425 million.

The sale was a negative drag on Adidas’ earnings as well as a far cry via the $1.4 billion the item paid in 1997 to buy TaylorMade’s then owner, French equipment maker Salomon S.A.

Adidas may have dumped the brand too soon. the item announced the sale several months after TaylorMade had signed a deal with Woods, for an undisclosed amount.

The partnership between Woods as well as TaylorMade came as Nike — the brand long most associated with Woods —shuttered its own golf equipment division after facing similar industry pressure.

At the time TaylorMade signed its deal with Woods, his comeback was very much in doubt. nevertheless on Sunday, of which doubt was eradicated.

Woods made his historic comeback at the 2019 Masters golf tournament, marking his 15th major win as well as unleashing an immediate surge in renewed Tiger interest. The golf champion used TaylorMade golf clubs for his victory match.

Pre-sale special edition replica TaylorMade Tiger Woods irons are right now available for $2,000, a roughly 40 percent markup via standard irons.

KPS — which funded its purchase of TaylorMade half in cash as well as half in secured notes as well as contingent considerations —also has some other investments of which include engineering equipment company, International Equipment Solutions, as well as running gear company, DexKo Global.

TaylorMade declined to comment, while KPS as well as Adidas did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment after work hours.